Professor Kenny Cupers
The Earth that Modernism Built
Monday 15 April 17u30-19u30
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
This lecture explores the roots of the modernist project – both heroic and tragic – to design the human by reshaping the environment, from the domestic sphere to the earth at large. It examines how statesmen, scientists, and designers mapped ethnicity onto territory and biology onto architecture, and in doing so, conceived of the earthly environment as an object of design. This entangled history of modernity demonstrates how novel ways of thinking about and designing the environment were bound up with natural science and the colonial project, asking us to reconsider long-held assumptions about humanity’s relationship to the earth.
Bio: Kenny Cupers is Speaker for Urban Studies and Associate Professor in the History and Theory of Architecture and Urbanism at the University of Basel. He is the author of The Social Project: Housing Postwar France, editor of Use Matters: An Alternative History of Architecture, and co-editor of Neoliberalism: An Architectural History (forthcoming).